05th Sep2011

Rhett Burden – University of Maryland at Eastern Shore

by Staff

“I decided to matriculate at UMES because of the bucolic rural atmosphere, friendly administrative staff, competent and knowledgeable professors, academic rankings and beautiful women!”
C/O 2009
Undergraduate Degree: Sociology
Graduate Degree: Conflict Analysis and Dispute Resolution

Visit Rhetts’ Website at: www.rrburdenmotivates.com
Personal Contacts:


How did you decide to become a student at the University of Maryland – Eastern Shore?

I decided to matriculate at UMES because of the bucolic rural atmosphere, friendly administrative staff, competent and knowledgeable professors, academic rankings and beautiful women!

Wow! This campus is amazing! Image Courtesy of the University of Maryland at Eastern Shore


What professors at the University of Maryland – Eastern Shore left the most impression upon you as a student and/or person? What did they do that continues to mean so much to you to this day?

There were so many professors and administrators that left an undeniable mark on my life.

My Residential Hall Director and mentor Marcellus Connor instilled professionalism.

Image Courtesy of the University of Maryland at Eastern Shore
My mentor and friend Director of Student Activities James Lunnermon instilled strong core values for self and others.

My fraternity brother, Mr. Corey Bowens, has acted as a surrogate dad for me since 2005.

My former professors Karl Smith, Dr. Howard Rebach (Dr. Rebach on Rate My Professor)Dr. Nina Bennett,Dr. Cheryl Bowers, Dr. Poole-Sykes and Dr. Patricia Goslee challenged me to be the best student/person I could be.


What is the story of your “experience” to date at the University of Maryland – Eastern Shore given its heralded status as a stellar and prestigious institution?

Anytime that I have the opportunity to speak about my “experience” at UMES, the only thing that I can say is that there may be some schools bigger but no schools better because they all have the same purpose, and that’s to educate. UMES took a vested interest in me from when I first walked through the doors until I graduated.


Where were the spots to go to if you wanted to cuddle with your boy or girlfriend?

When I wanted to cuddle with my girlfriend, I went to the Library, my Student Apartment or Car!

The Famous Frederick Douglass Library – Image Courtesy of UMES!


What were the best restaurants on and near the campus? Which dishes do you enjoy the most?

I loved our café, especially breakfast. The cooks in the café were top-notch!

Saturday Morning at the Café


Off-campus you had to go to Seacrets in Ocean City. Great food, affordable prices!!

Image Courtesy of Yelp!


What were the chants heard most often at the sporting events?

I Bleed Maroon and Gray, I Bleed Maroon and Gray, I Bleed that M-A-R-Double O- N, G-R-A-Y!!! Hawk Pride, Catch It !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Who was your College crush?

I had a few. Probably the biggest were Sharnia, Sorena and Jada.


How did you overcome your nervousness about going to college?

Honestly, I wasn’t nervous about attending college, I was more nervous about disappointing my mom, brother and myself during college.


What was your major? and Why did you choose it?

Sociology, because the study of our society and the people in it, fascinated me and still does.


What has been your proudest moment @ the University of Maryland – Eastern Shore?

My proudest moment at UMES would be everyday that I had and took the opportunity to make a positive difference in someone’s life.


What was your saddest moment @ the University of Maryland – Eastern Shore?

My saddest moment was not winning the Mr. HBCU title for my campus. I placed 3rd in the competition.


What did you pledge? And why? And if not, why not?

Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, INC. Alpha’s legacy of being intellectual, prominent and relevant made it the only choice for me.

How were you positively active on campus? (e.g. clubs, SGA, etc.)
Residence Life- Residential Assistant 05-08, Student Government Association 06-09 Mr. Sophomore 06-07, Mr. Junior 07-08, Mr. UMES 08-09, Thurgood Marshall Scholar, Dean’s List, Who’s Who Among College Student, Golden Key, Drama Society


Where was the “yard” located?

Princess Anne, Maryland



What and where were the historical places on campus?

Murphy HallStudent Development CenterSomerset Hall– Academic Quad

Architecturaly Decadent Murphy Hall on UMES’ campus – Image Courtesy of UMES

Quite a Nice View of Somerset Hall on UMES’ campus – Image Courtesy of UMES

The Student Development Center


Are there any ghost stories involving buildings or spots on campus?

We have a small cemetery on campus with the remains on 3 former presidents. Their spirit leads UMES to new heights and creates world class students and citizens.


How many “firsts” did you have at college ? What were they? (e.g. first road trip, first job interview, first love, first “F or A”, etc.)

I had a lot of first as UMES. First real girlfriend, I’ll leave that nameless. First collegiate job, Residence Life with Dean Tilghman. First real puppy lust, Jada. First time traveling to a professional conference, SGA.
If you could speak to those family members that have risen but that live forever through you, what words would you speak?
The purpose of life, is a life of purpose. God loves you and His love will get you through any trial.


When and how did you discover your passion in life?

I discovered my passion for people in my sophomore year during my time as an RA and Mr. Sophomore. I discovered that God blessed me with an ability to change people’s lives through my relationship with Him, my words, actions and talents. To help people is my passion


Whats your take on life (in the philosophical sense)?

“Sin isn’t just the wrong actions we commit, but the right actions we omit.”- Joyce Meyer I believe that this saying means that we should always do our best to do the right thing and be mindful of our actions.


If you could only speak two sentences to the youth coming after you what would you say?
Today you are you, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is youer than you. – Dr. Seuss


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Graduate of an HBCU and true believer in HBCUs being the best at giving a well-rounded education academically and personally.




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